ANFREL Press Release on the Conduct of the 2017 Cambodia Commune and Sangkat Council Elections
(Initial Publication on June 6, 2017 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia)
The Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) congratulates the people of the Kingdom of Cambodia for their courage in turning up in great numbers to exercise their right to vote. ANFREL also commends the steps taken by the National Election Committee (NEC) to improve the voting process and by many other stakeholders who dedicated their best efforts to ensure a successful election day.
ANFREL acknowledges the success of election day operations, with voting found to be generally smooth, high voter turnout across the country and relatively few incidents to report, although uneven implementation of the rules prescribed by the NEC occurred. The campaign preceding election day was also more vibrant and peaceful than in the last elections, despite the persistence of traditional unfair patterns, such as the use of state resources for campaigning, intimidation of political opponents, media and CSOs, and vote-buying to mobilize supporters.
Among the most significant improvements observed in this year’s polls compared to past elections were the creation of a new electronic voter list, instrumental in avoiding occurrences of vote-padding and double voting, and the adoption of a revised NEC law in 2015. The election management body established by this law is more balanced and effective, as evidenced by its fairer regulations and guidelines.
ANFREL observed an efficient electoral system attributable to the NEC’s polling rules and their implementation. On election day, the mission observed relatively few deviations from standard polling procedures, with most occurrences caused by inadequate training of polling staff. In this regard, additional efforts should be made to enhance the capacity of the country’s election management bodies ahead of the 2018 general elections.
Click to read full Press Release: Press Statement (ANFREL Cambodia)
Khmer translation: ANFREL Press Release (Cambodia 2017)_KHM (1)